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Journal of Arid Land  2013, Vol. 5 Issue (3): 384-395    DOI: 10.1007/s40333-013-0169-8
Research Articles     
Estimation of water balance in the source region of the Yellow River based on GRACE satellite data
Min XU1,2, BaiSheng YE1,2, QiuDong ZHAO2, ShiQing ZHANG2*, Jiang WANG2
1 State Key Laboratory of Cryospheric Science, Cold and Arid Regions Environmental and Engineering Research Institute, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Lanzhou 730000, China;
2 Cold and Arid Regions Environmental and Engineering Research Institute, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Lanzhou 730000, China
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Abstract  Water storage has important significance for understanding water cycles of global and local domains and for monitoring climate and environmental changes. As a key variable in hydrology, water storage change represents the sum of precipitation, evaporation, surface runoff, soil water and groundwater exchanges. Water storage change data during the period of 2003–2008 for the source region of the Yellow River were collected from Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE) satellite data. The monthly actual evaporation was estimated according to the water balance equation. The simulated actual evaporation was significantly consistent and correlative with not only the observed pan (20 cm) data, but also the simulated results of the version 2 of Simple Bio-sphere model. The average annual evaporation of the Tangnaihai Basin was 506.4 mm, where evaporation in spring, summer, autumn and winter was 130.9 mm, 275.2 mm, 74.3 mm and 26.1 mm, and accounted for 25.8%, 54.3%, 14.7% and 5.2% of the average annual evaporation, respectively. The precipitation increased slightly and the actual evaporation showed an obvious decrease. The water storage change of the source region of the Yellow River displayed an increase of 0.51 mm per month from 2003 to 2008, which indicated that the storage capacity has significantly increased, probably caused by the degradation of permafrost and the increase of the thickness of ac-tive layers. The decline of actual evaporation and the increase of water storage capacity resulted in the increase of river runoff.

Key wordsabundance      richness      grain size      species-area curve      variogram      Horqin Sandy Land     
Received: 09 January 2013      Published: 10 September 2013

This work was funded by the Global Change Research Program of China (2010CB951401), the National Natural Science Foundation of China (41030638, 41121001, 41030527, 41130641, and 41201025) and the One Hundred Talents Pro-gram of the Chinese Academy of Sciences.

Corresponding Authors: ShiQing ZHANG     E-mail:
Cite this article:

Min XU, BaiSheng YE, QiuDong ZHAO, ShiQing ZHANG, Jiang WANG. Estimation of water balance in the source region of the Yellow River based on GRACE satellite data. Journal of Arid Land, 2013, 5(3): 384-395.

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